• John McGary, Woodford Sun Staff

City to purchase fire truck

After a presentation by Versailles Fire Chief Brian Wainscott, the Versailles City Council Tuesday voted 5 to 0 to purchase a $375,000 fire engine that has a ladder with a reach of 100-feet. Council Member Owen Roberts was absent.

Wainscott told the council that he and an assistant fire chief had recently made a visual inspection of the 2006 Pierce truck in Mundelein, Ill., and believed it was in excellent shape. He said the new vehicle would not only have a longer reach than the existing 75-foot ladder truck, which is 26 years old, but also be safer. A new, similar fire truck would have cost more than $1 million, he said. Wainscott said last month, the Mundelein Fire Department dropped the price of the truck, which was originally a demonstrator vehicle, from $429,000.

In other fire department-related news, the council voted unanimously to accept a low bid of $15,500 from Calcutta Logistics, LLC of Salt Lake City, Utah for used shipping containers. The containers will be used to build the department’s training tower, which Wainscott said would otherwise cost $250,000.

In response to a question from Council Member Ann Miller, Wainscott said training in the tower will include active fires, and the tower can also be used by other agencies.

Old middle school

The council voted unanimously in favor of a motion that could result in the old Woodford Middle School building, which was recently demolished, added to the city’s Old Historic District overlay. Mayor Brian Traugott said the overlay could include other properties on Maple Street as well as the Charred Oaks Inn across Lexington Street, if the owners of that bed and breakfast agree to the move. Traugott said the designation would help preserve the character of the area and was a better alternative than rezoning the old middle school property, which could have resulted in a lawsuit by the property’s owner. Traugott said the city would have likely lost that lawsuit.

Council Member Ken Kerkhoff said his primary concern was protecting the property’s investors, who would have seen the value of their land lowered if the city downzoned it.

Flower baskets

After several minutes of discussion, the council voted unanimously to pay $1,320 for flowers and maintenance services for the plants from Bi-Water Farm of Georgetown.

Forty baskets on light poles and 20 barrels donated by Woodford Reserve will be filled with Wave Petunias along Main Street and Lexington Street. Kerkhoff said in the past, city workers had maintained the plants and “it didn’t work.” He said many other cities used outside vendors to do such work.

Public Works Director Bart Miller said later that Bi-water Farm was the only business that tailored a bid to the city’s specifications, which included the plants and their maintenance.

Road resolution

The council voted unanimously in favor of a resolution asking the state Transportation Cabinet to resurface South Main Street from mile point 12.2 to 13.7 and restore funding for improvements to U.S. 60 from Woodford Feed to Marsailles Drive.

The South Main Street work would take place from Rose Hill Avenue to the entrance of Southside Elementary, which the resolution said was previously in Gov. Bevin’s six-year road plan. The resolution also states that that Gov. Bevin’s present road plan includes only one project in city limits.

Athletic support

The council also unanimously supported resolutions to honor Woodford County High School’s (WCHS) cheerleading and wrestling teams and the Woodford County Middle School (WCMS) cheerleading squad.

The WCHS cheerleading team recently earned the 2018 Game Day National Championship in their division, while the wrestling squad finished third in the state and scored several individual honors.

The WCMS cheerleading squad finished third nationally in the recent Junior High Game Day competition.

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